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In Episode 19 - The Lugru Corridor, Kirito and Leafa are blocked from entering Lugru by Salamanders and are forced to fight with them. In the middle of the fight, Yui tells Leafa to use all her magic to heal Kirito from the damage of the incoming barrage of Fire Spells, while Kirito is chanting an Ilusion Spell that Leafa taught him when they entered the corridor.

Kirito turns into The Gleam Eyes from Sword Art Online and begins to kill everyone (save one Salamander who Kirito then bribes with the loot he just got, while another fled by diving into the lake, only to die).

Leafa explained previously that Spriggan's spells are mostly useless in battle, and by definition Illusions shouldn't damage enemy players or even kill them (unless they are intimidated and back off falling into an abyss of a monster filled lake). If they could do damage, they'd technically be summoning/conjuring.

Kirito isn't a hacker who made Leafa, Yui and all the Slamanders think that a giant beast was throwing them about, when really he was just stabbing them. And in Sword Art Online, Kirito didn't have any sort of summoning abilities (at least in the anime). So how did Kirito's Illusion pick up, throw and kill the Salamanders?

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    It's been a long time since I was familiar with this, but in this case it was a simple transformation magic. It can only turn you into things weaker than you that you're familiar with. In Kirito's case this includes the Gleam Eyes, a frightening beast no one else was familiar with. The advantages it gave were reach and intimidation, both of which we see used copiously. Biting a guy to death is scarier than a sword strike, and Kirito used this to break their morale and strategy. – zibadawa timmy Sep 15 '14 at 4:58
  • it is also possible that gleam eyes was just an illusion as gleam eyes didn't use more than one limb at a time that kirito was in each limb at the time gleam eyes attacked such as the mouth when he bit into the salamander thus looking like he ate the salamander – user23398 Apr 12 '16 at 14:44
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Rather than an illusion magic, it seems what Kirito used is a transformation magic instead. The following is based from the 3rd novel.

"Well, I somehow remember the battle earlier. I used the magic Yui suggested, and became very big. Since my sword disappeared, I had to use my hands..."

"Also with the teeth bite yo~"

On Lyfa's shoulder, Yui added with pleasure.

Remember that Yui is an AI from Aincrad and that upon arriving at the Alfheim world, Kirito noticed that Alfheim is based on Aincrad, including the skill sets and player data.

In the skills window, I saw several skills side by side. These skills included: 1-H Swords, Unarmed Skills, and Parry, the Combat skills, as well as Fishing, a support skill, but the proficiency values were abnormal. More were just about 900, and some had even reached 1,000 and had a tag denoting MASTERY.

Later when asking Yui, Yui confirmed that.

"It seems this world is based on a copy of the Sword Art Online server."

This explains how Kirito can turn into The Gleam Eyes. Since it is a copy of the SAO, some resource file might be still left intact. While it is not normally accessible by the players, with Yui giving assist, it is possible that she hacked the system a bit and granted access to Kirito to transform into The Gleam Eyes. This wasn't explicitly mentioned in the novel, however.

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    Errr... No. This is only mostly right. She didn't hack the system or anything of the sort. The spell Kirito used transformed him into a monster with stats equal to his own. This basically means that the Gleam Eyes boss had the same stats as Kirito did when he finished the game, and the game assigned him the Gleam Eyes model because of it. – TUSF Sep 19 '14 at 0:17
  • Besides yui even said she couldn't hack the system or accesse any administrative properties – user14062 Apr 22 '15 at 8:52
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    Illusion magic can transform you for viewing as another thing. The strength of the result depends on the stats of the player (I don't remember very well where they told this). If i remember correctly, Leafa told this to Kirito on Lugru Corridor when she's explaining about the Spriggan's spells. Kirito have the best mastery on the server (At these time two years of experience, when the server have only one year of life) and lot of stats from SAO legacy. Maybe some of this are the reason. – Sakura Kinomoto Apr 22 '15 at 10:19
  • @SakuraKinomoto You might want to expand that into an answer – nhahtdh Apr 22 '15 at 16:53
  • Ok, I can try to do it in another moment, when i have time for document the answer. – Sakura Kinomoto Apr 27 '15 at 11:01
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Let's not forget that the Salamanders' remain-lights were extinguished as soon as they were formed. This means that Kirito also got the special stats of the monster he became. GLEAM EYES was the first demonic monster the SAO players faced, according to the wiki. In Alfheim this must mean that any damage a demonic monster does cannot be healed by magic and anyone it killed could not be revived, thus they all faced the penalties for dying in Alfheim with no chance of escape through revival. That's pretty terrifying if you ask me.

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It is a spell called metamorphosis. Here's the description from the wiki.

"Once the incantation is completed, the spell turns the caster into a monster. The shape of the monster that the player is transformed into depends randomly on the player's combat skills. However, this spell is not popular, as the end result is usually a weak monster with no change in stats, thus it is usually not viable in actual combat."

It is also an illusion spell.

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From the scene, it seems implied that Yui had worked out a plan with Kirito to turn into the Gleam Eyes monster ("Do it now Daddy!").

It obviously isn't an illusion - he was killing other players with it. The only possibility you're left with is that although Sprigins normally have only illusion magic, he had a special ability which gave him access to transform into to this beast.

Since Yui could not hack the systems as was mentioned earlier, the best we can say is that she recognized that he had higher level magic skills in his inventory that could be used to his advantage. And although Leafa was generally aware of what Sprigins were capable of, she may not have been aware of what one at Kirito's power levels were capable of.

Thus I'd say he had the ability to transform into a real monster, given his ability, and perhaps Yui pointed this out to him and he made use of it.

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